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‘Counting back’: 100 days left until the World Championships kick off

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Summer is approaching as it is reflected by the weather and the calendar is also in line with our expectations. There are 100 days left until the event, the 17th FINA World Championships will begin on 14th July. The biggest sporting event in the history of Hungary will be the world championships of six disciplines. The protagonists are becoming more and more excited and determined, therefore preparation is getting harder and harder.

The 100 days’ milestone is very compact and near, so much so that one may stop and have some thoughts about it. The same thing happened to the Olympic and world championships bronze medallist, 5-time European champion swimmer, Boglárka Kapás and her coach, Balázs Virth. They did not forget about this round number even in Thailand:

‘This is the last week of our training camp in Thailand 100 days before the wold championships. Everybody is healthy and we are preparing for the Hungarian National Championship to be held in Debrecen, where we would like to exceed last year’s results. Debrecen hosted the European Championships earlier and it reminds us of beautiful memories. Now after 100 days Budapest will host the world championships. We are eagerly looking forward to it’ – said Boglárka Kapás in a message and she even recorded this date at the sandy beach in Thailand.

Synchronised swimmers are also preparing for the summer with full determination. We asked Luca Rényi about the milestone:

‘We are counting back at home and we really feel closer and closer to the world championships in Budapest. Our team is great and we pursue a totally different attitude than earlier. We prepare 5-6 hours per day in order to do well at the world championships and after finishing our routine, our coach, Natalia Tarasova, who has been working with us for a year and a half now and can be considered as our ‘second mother’, would tell us: ‘good job’.  These two words mean a lot to us and motivate us as well. The routines are improving every day and we would like to show what we are capable of. I believe that thanks to Natalia we will have a very special routine built upon Hungarian traditions.’

Villő Kormos is also preparing to take the plunge, more specifically to plunge into the water. In her status report the Hungarian national team member European championship bronze medallist diver informed:  

„100 days prior to the world championship my jumps and movements are about to take their final form. Currently I am working on my back two and a half back somersault with a pike.”

This is how it goes:

„It’s one of my favourite jumps and at the same time one of the most difficult ones.  I cannot see where I will land since I am standing with my back to the pool. This is why it is highly important for me to become able to control the direction of the movement in the air. I have competed in two European championships in Budapest, I could make it to the solo finals, we finished fourth with Nóri Barta and sixth with Zsófi Reisinger. High diving is my major event and my great longing is to achieve that all jumps are performed well. Concerning synchro Flóra Fazekas-Gondos and I are aiming at making it to the finals, also. As of now we are practicing here in the „Bubble” on Margaret-island but we can’t wait to try the tower of Duna Arena and its amazing dry training room.”

The national water polo team, attracting thousands of fans to their matches typically, is also tuning for the competition.  

Ildikó Tóth, the center player of the European champion women’s water polo team says there are lots of other things to do before the world championships, but most certainly looking forward to the event is exciting already.

‘Fortunately, several nice tasks are awaiting us in our clubs such as the LEN Cup finals or the national championship finals. However, I follow the happenings and have some thoughts about the approaching world championships when seeing some recent pictures or news in the social media. In such situations it is really emotional to realise how close the event is. I am looking forward to it. The national team is always busy preparing, as it is now, according to the calendar we are about to visit several places. I even made friends with the thought of China, we will spend two weeks there. It might be more convenient to be away looking at the present swimming-pool situation here. Our team cannot be considered as a young one and it is important that we do not have to waste much time between the training venue and the accommodation facility. We have also trained in Duna Arena to get some taste of the future atmosphere and we could imagine what the wonder arena would feel with full house. I am eagerly waiting for the summer.’

The 2013 world champion Bence Bátori definitely would like to get into the men’s water polo team for the world championships and he has great chance to do so:

‘I was fortunate to become world champion and I can say it was a fabulous feeling. If we could repeat it at home, it would even be indescribable. I did not go to Rio with the team, that is maybe why I have greater expectations considering the upcoming event. We have already trained in Duna Arena, we can see the preparation and I am sure that this year’s world championships will be of incredibly high level in all disciplines. 100 days… the world championships are really approaching and now after coming across more and more posters and advertisements, it is impossible to step by. Up to now there were three get-togethers with this new national team, all of them went well and I was charged with positive energies. We will have a new team, the expectations are high, Tamás Märcz (head coach) is also very determined. He and our mental trainer have already spoken about the pressure related to a home event and certainly a professional athlete must deal with it properly. I think I have good chance to get into the team. Just like before I also have to put all my efforts into it in the future so that I could gain the head coach’s trust.’

Kristóf Rasovszky may compete in four different events in the open water competition of the 17th FINA World Championships. The 20-year-old swimmer from Veszprém plans to enter the 5k, 10k and 25k contests in the qualifier competition to be held in early summer in France, and he hopes to be a member of the Hungarian team in the relay competition as well.

"My main event is of course the 10k, so the most important thing for me is to do well in that distance, but I may qualify in other events as well. I will be in good shape during the World Championships, so it will not be a problem to compete in three or four events" – Rasovszky said.

Rasovszky, who won the gold medal at the World Junior Championships and at the European Junior Championships in 2016, adding 5th places in two World Cup events, finished only in 48th place a couple of weeks ago in the World Cup race in Abu Dhabi, his first major competition this year, but surprisingly it has had a positive effect on him.

"I have changed my approach to my trainings, I wanted to work harder, and I got extra motivation. Thanks to this change I managed to win the European Cup event in Eilat. Márk Papp and I could collaborate efficiently, our tactics proved to be successful and having the sufficient power I could endure till the end of the race. "

Rasovszky’s next contest will be the Hungarian Pool Championship in Debrecen, followed by the Hungarian Long Distance Championship and the WCH qualifier.

"I have the qualifier competition on my mind right now, but it goes without saying that afterwards FINA World will dominate my thoughts” – said Rasovszky, whose goal is to finish in the top six during the World Championships in Balatonfüred.